Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Makes Case against Socialism [National Review]

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez criticized Uber as predatory even while her campaign used it extensively.

There’s a kernel of legitimate criticism here, mixed in with a bushel of conservative straw-man arguments.

This article, and the controversy, are from August. I’m just finding out about it now.

Google donated $5k to GOP Senator who “joked” about attending a lynching with her Black opponent [Cory Doctorow/Boing Boing]

Republican Cindy Hyde-Smith is a Mississipi GOP Senator is going into a runoff election against her Democratic opponent, a Black man named Mike Espy who might end up the first Black Mississipi Senator since 1883. She made headlines last week with a joke about attending a “public hanging.” She also made public comments in favor of voter suppression.

Google donated $5,000 to her campaign.

Google says they made the donation before they heard about her comments and they never would have donated had they known. However, she espoused hateful views before her recent comments, and Google isn’t asking for its money back.

Are Jared and Ivanka Good for the Jews? [NYTimes]

Donald Trump’s apparent coziness with anti-Semites is difficult to reconcile with Jared and Ivanka Trump. Jared is the grandson of a Holocaust survivor, and Ivanka converted to Judaism to marry him. They’re not just Jews – they’re Orthodox Jews, who observe the Sabbath every Saturday. And they are also, seemingly, the only people Donald Trump fully and completely trusts, both in business and personally.

I don’t think Donald Trump is himself racist. He doesn’t believe in anything but Donald Trump. I’m reminded of John Goodman’s line in the Big Lebowski: Nazis were awful people, but at least they stood for something. Donald Trump stands for and believes in nothing but Donald Trump.

But Trump’s core, most loyal supporters are racists, and Trump knows it.

40-hour work-week as a tool of immiserating economic growth

“The culture of the eight-hour workday is big business’ most powerful tool for keeping people in this same dissatisfied state where the answer to every problem is to buy something.” Via Cory Doctorow on Boing Boing

Man shouts ‘Heil Hitler! Heil Trump!’ in Baltimore theater during ‘Fiddler on the Roof’

After a man shouted “Heil Hitler! Heil Trump!” during a Baltimore performance of “Fiddler on the Roof,” audience members told a reporter they believed they were about to die in a mass shooting. [Xeni Jardin/Boing Boing]

Reevaluating Lee

Gen. Stanley McChrystal: “At 63, I Threw Away My Prized Portrait of Robert E. Lee.” “Lee was a willing and active participant in a society and economy that rested on slavery, and he fought ferociously to defend it. Lee was a Southerner, and efforts to depict him in opposition to slavery run contrary to his actions.” (The Atlantic)

Trump’s Acting Attorney General was an active participant in a scam company that marketed “masculine toilets”

Matthew Whitaker advised a scam company that promoted toilets for men with large penises and a blockchain time travel scheme. He used his authority as a former US Attorney to threaten critics. [Cory Doctorow/Boing Boing]

All the best people.

Deals like the one between New York and Amazon seem to combine the worst elements of capitalism and socialism

Amazon Is Getting at Least $1.7 Billion to Come to Queens. Now Comes the Fight Over Whether It’s Worth It” [The New York Times]

Taxpayers pay the bill, investors get the rewards. I’m reminded of the 2008 Wall Street bailout, where the slogan for opponents was “socialized risk, privatized profit.”

Apple is using financial engineering to exploit Trump’s tax cuts, diverting wealth from workers, who create value, to investors.

Apple’s world-beating financial engineering is teaching the corporate world how to exploit Trump’s tax cuts.” [Cory Doctorow/Boing Boing]

Republicans are paying the Trump tax

Trump’s political strategy is failing. Given the relative strength of the economy, Republicans should be polling a LOT better than they have been. Ezra Klein compares present-day polls with past research done in the midterms in other elections, and finds a big gap. Obama in particular was significantly more popular with 10% employment than Republicans are at less than 4%.[Ezra Klein/Vox]

Trump’s dog

Trump Has Found His Roy Cohn in Matt Whitaker [Jonathan Chait/New York Magazine]

With Matt Whitaker, Trump has an attorney general that will allow Trump to place himself above the law and commit any crime with impunity.

The archconservative new acting attorney general has run for office and appears to see his future in Republican politics. As a candidate, he publicly declared that judges should be “people of faith” who had “a biblical view of justice.” In practical terms, he has interpreted the biblical view of justice the way most of his fellow Christian conservatives do: a combination of stern, Old Testament punishments meted out to Democrats combined with New Testament forgiveness toward any sin by a Republican.

Whitaker has publicly attacked the FBI for failing to indict Hillary Clinton for using a personal email. He defended Donald Trump Jr.’s decision to meet with a Russian operative promising dirt on Hillary Clinton. He opposed the appointment of a special counsel to investigate Russian election interference (“Hollow calls for independent prosecutors are just craven attempts to score cheap political points and serve the public in no measurable way.”) Whitaker has called on Rod Rosenstein to curb Mueller’s investigation, and specifically declared Trump’s finances (which include dealings with Russia) off-limits. He has urged Trump’s lawyers not to cooperate with Mueller’s “lynch mob”…

… having been installed in the Department of Justice, Whitaker has reportedly operated as a kind of White House spy to keep tabs on officials who might be suspiciously independent of Trump. Trump’s Chief of Staff John Kelly “has privately described [Whitaker] as the West Wing’s ‘eyes and ears”’ in a department the president has long considered at war with him”….

Internet death sentence

AT&T disconnects whole families from the internet because someone in their house is accused of copyright infringement

Cory Doctorow at Boing Boing:

The customers who are being disconnected have never been able to face their accusers or have a day in court. The people they live with are not accused of any wrongdoing. The internet they are losing is likely the only option they have for broadband — or one of two options, with the other one likely being a cable company like Comcast who may now join AT&T in a race to the bottom.

The internet is not a video-on-demand service, it’s the nervous system of the 21st century. Terminating someone from the internet terminates their access to family, education, employment, civic and political engagement, health care information, and virtually everything else we use to measure whether a society is functioning well for its citizens.

Defending the indefensible

Prop. 7 looks to change daylight saving time in California (CBS8.com)

I’ve become a convert to the Daylight Saving Time/Standard Time switch. Sure, it’s a problem for a couple of days – but it maximizes daylight for the maximum number of people. Year-round DST means kids going to school in the dark and getting hit by cars.

We should spend more of the year on standard time, though – six months of each, as used to be the case.